Wisconsin gym apologizes for offering ‘I Can’t Breathe’ workout
A Wisconsin gym apologized for offering a new workout titled “I Can’t Breathe” — some of George Floyd’s final words — with a display showing a man down on one knee.
An image of a dry erase board describing the workout at AnytimeFitness in Wauwatosa spread quickly across social media platforms, drawing sharp criticism from users over its similarities to the manner in which Floyd died.
The description of the over 35-minute workout included the phrase, “And don’t you dare lay down.” It’s wasn’t clear what the saying referred to.
“Really concerned that @AnytimeFitness finds mocking the death of George Floyd appropriate racism is alive in Wauwatosa #Milwaukee,” one Twitter user wrote.
On Reddit, where the image is believed to have first surfaced, one user commented: “Talk about tone-deaf.”
“Fire the person who thought this was clever or funny. Making light of a man’s brutal murder. Sad sick people,” another Reddit user wrote.
Floyd died on May 25 after a white Minneapolis cop, Derek Chauvin, knelt on his neck for nearly 9 minutes. In a recording of the fatal encounter, Floyd could be heard saying, “I cannot breathe! I cannot breathe!”
His death has sparked worldwide protests over police brutality and racial injustice.
The gym on Wednesday issued an apology, saying they “are terribly sorry for our actions this week by offering an ‘I Can’t Breathe’ workout.”
“No matter our intent, we now recognize how deeply offensive our words, illustrations and actions have been,” the statement, which was posted to Facebook, read.
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